• Todd Collins

A Best Friends Journey Of Entrepreneurship ( A Quick Guide To Happiness and Success )

Typically it's me writing these blogs. However my best friend of 30 something years, we are too old at this point to have an exact number wrote an amazing post. For some reason me getting my thoughts out on paper, or feeling out in a post to transfer emotion or tell a story has been easy.

Who knew Nick Collins had it in him as well? If you are an entrepreneur or someone who is looking to start your own business these helpful tips will 100% be a guide to success for you. So this is where the narration ends for me, and Nick takes over. I would 100% make sure you read this a few times as the more you read it, the more it will make sense to you.

The Journey of A 20 Year Entrepreneur

I missed my anniversary by a couple of days. I’m very proud of this plaque because I was self-employed 2 years before this picture was taken. (Image from 2001)

I have seen many presidents, economies, trends, and patterns in my near 2 decades of self-employment. If anyone would care to continue reading, there are a couple “things” I have done to keep me boss-less, despite the normal small biz failure rate you typically hear about.

Number one hands down have been ...

Finding the best people and allowing them to do what they do best. Having the right people in your corner ie: spouse, friends, etc. ditch the dead weight and dramatics at all costs. I can’t stress this enough. In all my years I have been good and bad at things. The things I am bad at, I find someone who is really good at it. It seems simple and it is. Just as you actively seek out the best talent, you should also actively avoid problematic people. Usually, your heart knows exactly who they are. Not sweating the small stuff. Not worrying about other people, their opinions/beliefs, businesses, competitors or trends. I always stayed focused on me, what’s best for my family, customers/clients and the business. How quickly can I set this business up, provide value to a client or customer and see a return on my time and money spent?

Believing in your idea and putting action and execution behind it. Without the action and execution, you have just an idea, like the rest of the people on their way to work in rush hour. Asking lots of seemingly dumb questions to real humans. Finding a mentor, I have 4 that I am honored to now call friends. Executing and failing and learning more in the process than the loss of the fail. Coming back from the said loss. Researching and becoming an expert on what it is your trying to do. You have to either have a really unique business offering or be an expert at your craft. Taking the leap and devoting your self to that one thing... you have to be really focused on that one thing and not a Debby dabbler. Once you get rolling then you can open up other revenue streams and launch other ideas but only once your first idea is truly stable, repeatable and profitable.

Speaking of that one thing. Make sure your business or idea has a clear path to cash and can generate enough money to make the juice worth the squeeze. Can you automate said business and NOT have to be there? That was always my goal. Scalability. Automation and good profit margins. Stay lean. All skinny jokes aside, my businesses have always been lean and mean. Low overhead and easy to explain to a kid or an angel investor. Lastly, I would say being in the game and catching a break/luck. Lots of cool things have happened from the right place right time stuff but being in the game allowed that to happen.

As I get older most who know me closely know I am winding down and starting to enjoy life even more than I already have in the past. I am so thankful to those who I have leaned on and called my friends /fam over the years. Nothing and I mean nothing is more valuable to me than my time that is well spent doing what I want to do with friends or fam. That’s it really, the ultimate goal.

A business owner has two families, his business and his family. The ability to nurture and grow your business and then at the end of the “workday” go home and nurture and grow your family is a really tough thing and it’s not easy. I have so much respect for those that do because I know the sacrifices it takes to be successful on both fronts. You have to get the work-life balance just right and that is a tough ship to navigate sometimes.

When I was sitting in my cubicle at age 17 and finally mustered enough courage to turn in my two weeks, I had no idea the journey and path it would lead to. At that time I gave up benefits and a really nice salary to try something I thought I could make work. I am so glad something deep inside gave me the courage to do so and I would do it all over again in a heartbeat.

The trading of my personal time for a check was never an option and the internet gets all the credit. It’s the great equalizer, it allows you to make as much as a surgeon and a lawyer combined while traveling the world using only your laptop, brain and fingers as your tools.

This will be the most “guruish” thing you will see from me for the next 3 years. I’m spent. I typed this on my phone and I’m now exhausted. I’m dreading the finality and the imminent pushing of the post button. I want to delete but feel it would be a disservice as if one person reads this and gets motivated I would be happy. Ok. I guess I’m done. Peace out ✌️


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Todd Collins

COO, Platinum Reputations

10400 Ridgland Rd, Suite 9A
Cockeysville, Maryland, 21030
(888) 568-3301

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